B&N E-reader Expected Soon, Google Addresses Book Search Critics, and More

Adrian Versteegh

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today's stories:

While the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that an e-reader from Barnes & Noble—featuring a six-inch black-and-white touchscreen and wireless connectivity—could ship as early as next month, a spokesperson for the bookseller has revealed plans to launch a color-screen device this spring (Mashable). Meanwhile, Microsoft says it has no intention of entering the e-reader market (Guardian). 

To coincide with the thirtieth anniversary of Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Irish author Eoin Colfer has produced the first authorized sequel to the five-part “trilogy” (Reuters).

Publishing industry groups in Australia—including the Australian Society of Authors—have rejected what the government calls a “compromise” plan to alter the country’s book importation restrictions (Australian).

A Detroit-area community is hoping that a film based on its struggle to reopen a historic public library will generate support (Library Journal).

In other film news, production of Memories of My Melancholy Whores, based on the latest novel by Gabriel García Márquez, has been delayed after complaints from an anti-prostitution group (Guardian).

American-born T. S. Eliot has been voted Britain’s favorite poet, according to a poll taken as part of BBC Poetry Season (Bookseller).

Following provincial budget reductions, the government of British Columbia eliminated all financial support this week for two publishing associations and the trade magazine BC BookWorld (CBC). Calling the move a “literary clearcut,” industry professionals responded yesterday by forming the Coalition for the Defence of Writing and Publishing (Quill & Quire).

Google cofounder Sergey Brin hit back at opponents of the Google Book Search initiative yesterday, saying in an op-ed piece that it was time to “dispel some myths about the agreement” (New York Times).